The winter dry spell is set to end this week, with the east coast of Australia set to receive a deluge leading up to the weekend, while record-breaking rainfall is expected for parts of northern Australia.
A cold front moving towards the east coast will bring coastal showers and wet weather to most New South Wales and Queensland coasts.
The period of wet weather is predicted to last into the middle of next week, with areas of the NSW south coast and Illawarra region likely to be the hardest hit.
“What will be causing this rain is a deepening low-pressure trough near the east coast. Within that trough, we’re expecting to see multiple low-pressure centers that will be the focus of potentially heavy rain over the next week,” said Weatherzone meteorologist Ben Domensino.
Domensino said it would be clearer over the next few days how severe the wet weather would be, but it was still too early to tell if an east coast low system, which could bring heavy rainfall for an extended period, would form.
The wet weather may reach as far inland as the Australian Capital Territory. Still, it would be “unlikely” to impact Victoria in any major way, according to Domensino, with Melbourne expected to receive only a few showers.
The Bureau of Meteorology’s senior meteorologist Christie Johnson said bureau aqua teams would closely monitor the situation over the next few days, particularly along the NSW south coast and parts of southeast Queensland, where many catchments are still very wet and susceptible to flooding.
She said that while there could be an extended period of wet and windy weather in the worst case, most of the bureau modeling shows the conditions will not last long.
“If any flood watches are issued, they’ll probably be issued either tomorrow or Saturday, so keep an eye out for that. At the moment, there are no particular catchments that we’re particularly worried about,” said Johnson on Wednesday.
The Northern Territory and parts of western Queensland can expect up to 20mm of rain tomorrow as a cloud band forming ahead of a coastal trough brings tropical moisture to the coast.
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“Rainfall totals will generally be fairly moderate; we’re talking maybe five to 20 millimeters today and the same tomorrow, which is not heavy rainfall likely to cause flooding,” said Johnson.
“But the monthly average rainfall in that part of the world in June and July tends to be in the low single digits; so very unusual rainfall. The highest [rainfall] that area has ever seen in June is 20 or 30 millimeters, so it will likely be a record.”
Temperatures will remain below average across the east coast until at least next week.
On the west coast, conditions will probably be clear and sunny over the weekend, with a cold front potentially affecting them late Monday. However, Johnson says it is too early to know the extent of the weather that this cold front may bring.